Thursday, November 29, 2012

House Republican Leadership Calls on Governor Patrick to Remove Secretary of Health and Human Services

Today, House Minority Leader Bradley H. Jones, Jr. (R–North Reading) and the entire Republican leadership team held a press conference to call for the resignation of Dr. JudyAnn Bigby, Secretary of Health and Human Services.

The call for Secretary Bigby’s removal comes in direct response to the breach at the Dr. William A. Hinton State Laboratory Institute by a rogue chemist which has led to the release of convicted felons, as well as the fungal meningitis outbreak at a Massachusetts-based pharmaceutical compounding company, which has led to 36 tragic deaths and several hundred cases of serious illness.

Please see below to read the letter in its entirety.

Big by Resignation Letter to Governor

House Minority Leader’s Statement on the Passing of State Representative Joyce Spiliotis

House Minority Leader Bradley H. Jones, Jr. (R-North Reading) issued the following statement today in response to the passing of State Representative Joyce Spiliotis:

“I am deeply saddened to hear of the passing of our colleague and friend Joyce Spiliotis. She was a fierce advocate for causes she believed in and matters critical to her constituents. Partisan politics aside, Joyce was a great person to work with in the House and she will be missed.

We fondly remember and still joke about the day when she ‘accidentally’joined the Republican Caucus meeting – needless to say that was a one-time thing.

Joyce was a dedicated and enthusiastic legislator from the moment she took office in 2003 and was devoted to her family and to the residents of the Twelfth Essex District.

I join with Joyce’s colleagues, friends and constituents in offering our deepest condolences to her husband Richard, their two daughters and their entire family. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family at this difficult time.”


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Wheel on Beacon Hill Goes ‘Round and ‘Round

In case you missed it, extreme patronage is still (unfortunately) alive and well on Beacon Hill. The most recent case came to surface when the Boston Globe published a story calling into question the driving record and hiring of Sheila Burgess, the Executive Director of the State Highway Division. It became apparent that Ms. Burgess was very well politically connected. Some of Ms. Burgess’ elected allies include Congressman James McGovern and our very own Lieutenant Governor, Tim Murray. Of course, Governor Deval Patrick weighed in on the controversy and said, “I will get to the bottom on it.” Surprise, surprise, it has been 10 days and it seems as if the Governor has not gotten to the “bottom on it.”

In today’s Lowell Sun, Peter Lucas pens a great op-ed drawing everyone’s attention to the fact that this fiasco with Sheila Burgess is just the latest case in an ever growing record of political hires on Beacon Hill. Instead of changing the culture on Beacon Hill, the Patrick/Murray administration has doubled down.

See below to read Peter Lucas’ article in its entirety.

Patrick Murray Patronage Lowell Sun

Monday, November 26, 2012

To Appoint or Not To Appoint?

Over the weekend, Boston Herald scribe Hillary Chabot wrote a piece about Bay State Democrats eyeing a potential move that would allow Governor Deval Patrick to appoint a United States Senator should John Kerry take a post in the Obama administration.

To serve as a brief refresher – back in 2004 state Democrats took the power to appoint away from Governor Mitt Romney. This move was to ensure that Governor Romney would be unable to appoint a Republican to the United States Senate. In 2009 when Senator Ted Kennedy passed away, Governor Patrick couldn’t stand the idea of a vacant seat pending a special election. As a result, the Governor joined state Democrats in changing the law to allow him to appoint an interim senator of his choosing before a statewide special election. With the present-day rumors that Senator John Kerry’s move to the Obama administration is all but certain, Democrats are contemplating changing the law – again - so that Governor Patrick would have the power to appoint, forgoing a special election completely.

Any such move to change this law at this point in the game could accurately be seen as corrupt. To imagine that Governor Patrick and state Democrats would change the law midterm, thus denying Massachusetts voters from being able to exercise their constitutional right to vote, is unfathomable. Elections can, and often do, have consequences. However, the fear of losing a United Sates Senate seat is by no means ground to change what is already law. It would be wise for Governor Patrick and state Democrats to leave the law unchanged.

See below to read the Boston Herald article in its entirety.

Whispers Build of Change to Special Election Rules

Friday, November 23, 2012

Small Business Saturday

Free shipping, early bird specials, 50% off! By now everyone has seen the advertisements promoting Black Friday and Cyber Monday (and in some cases, Thanksgiving Day sales!), but not everyone is aware of a lesser known event – Small Business Saturday. Now in its third year, Small Business Saturday takes place the Saturday after Thanksgiving and was created to encourage holiday shoppers to patronize small and local brick and mortar businesses. This year, Small Business Saturday is Saturday, November 24.

The small businesses in our communities create jobs and stimulate the local and national economies, yet often have to compete with online stores and chains for business. When we shop small, we not only get great service and products, but we are supporting the fabric of our communities and building relationships.

This weekend, avoid the crowds and lines at the mall and big-box stores and head to “Main Street” in your community and shop small!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

From all of us here at The Capitol View, we hope you and your loved ones have a safe and happy Thanksgiving!

We also ask that you please remember to keep the men and women of our Armed Forces in your thoughts and prayers this Thanksgiving, as many of them will not have the opportunity to celebrate this holiday with their families and friends.

Monday, November 19, 2012

House Minority Leader Jones Calls for Halt to Instate Tuition for Illegal Immigrants, Says Top-Down Review of Benefit Allocation Necessary

House Minority Leader Bradley H. Jones, Jr. (R-North Reading) issued the following statement today in response to Governor Patrick’s decision to award in-state tuition to illegal immigrants:

"The implementation of in-state tuition rates for illegal immigrants should be stopped immediately. Regardless of whether or not the Governor and I agree on this issue, the topic at hand should be how best to provide an affordable education for all of Massachusetts’ residents.

An acceptable starting point would be to provide tuition and fee waivers for active duty servicepersons who are permanent and legal residents of Massachusetts. Proposed as legislation by House Republicans during the current session, this initiative would also extend to veterans of the Commonwealth who attend any state college, community college, or state university.

Governor Patrick’s most recent attempt to usurp the power of the Legislature is cause for concern. Instead of engaging elected officials from both political parties in constructive conversation and debate, he has put his interests, both political and personal, above those of Massachusetts’ residents.

While offering an affordable higher education to the residents of Massachusetts is paramount, we must be judicious and fair in how we award such benefits."

HELP WANTED: Campaign Driver for Lt. Governor Tim Murray

With the state’s unemployment rate up to 6.6%, we were recently perusing the classified section of the newspaper and stumbled upon the following advertisement. In light of the recent media reports surrounding Sheila Burgess, the now former director of the Massachusetts Highway Safety Division, we thought she might be interested in applying.

Wanted for immediate employment: Individual with spotty driving record to be responsible for day-to-day driving of gubernatorial hopeful. Interested candidate MUST have over 30 entries on driving record including multiple accidents and failure to stop for a police officer. What the preferred applicant lacks in driving ability, they will make up with access to numerous political acquaintances. Occasional pre-dawn driving on Mass Pike may be required. Competitive $85,000+ salary and benefits. Applicants must apply in person to Room 360 of the Massachusetts State House.

Friday, November 16, 2012

House Minority Leader’s Statement on Massachusetts’ Sluggish Tax Revenue Growth

House Minority Leader Bradley H. Jones, Jr. (R-North Reading) issued the following statement today in response to the Department of Revenue’s certification that the 2013 income tax rate will remain at 5.25%:

"With the recent news from the Department of Revenue that Massachusetts’ tax revenue growth was negative for the past three months, any hope for a decrease in the state income tax next year has been thwarted. The fact that positive revenue growth should have been a relatively easy hurdle to clear further proves how the Commonwealth’s economy remains extremely fragile.

Unfortunately, hard-working taxpayers and struggling families have just been dealt another blow during these trying economic times. As such, it is imperative that Governor Patrick and Democratic leaders on Beacon Hill see this as a clear signal that any statewide tax increase would be disastrous."

Thursday, November 15, 2012

House Minority Leader’s Statement on the Fourth Consecutive Month of Increased Unemployment in Massachusetts

House Minority Leader Bradley H. Jones, Jr. (R-North Reading) issued the following statement today in response to the Commonwealth’s unemployment rate rising for the fourth consecutive month:

"I am deeply troubled that the residents and small business owners in Massachusetts are faced with the fourth consecutive month of rising unemployment. This news, coupled with the fact that September’s job numbers were revised downward by 2,400, serves as a stark reminder that our focus on Beacon Hill needs to be on turning around the Commonwealth’s economic climate.

It is my sincere hope that when the Legislature reconvenes in January one of our first orders of business is getting Massachusetts’ residents and small businesses on solid ground. House Democrats cannot continue to defer targeted measures at eradicating high unemployment until the very last minute, as was the case this session.

Furthermore, with the ongoing dialogue within the Patrick administration being the need for a crippling statewide tax increase, I would encourage the Governor to think twice about those plans as any tax hike would further diminish the Bay State’s opportunity for any sort of sustainable economic recovery."

Friday, November 2, 2012

Daylight Savings - Fall 2012

It’s that time of the year again – time to fall back that is! The Capitol View wanted to take this opportunity to remind you to set your clocks back one hour this Saturday night before you go to bed!

The Massachusetts Department of Fire Services (DFS) is also asking that you change your batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms this weekend as well. The DFS says that working smoke alarms can double a family’s chance of surviving a fire.